Home News The Elizabeth Street Garden Fight Is Not Over After All

The Elizabeth Street Garden Fight Is Not Over After All

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Photo: Wojciech Migda / Alamy Stock Photo

state supreme court judge control The ruling is the latest chapter in a long-running dispute over land owned by the city of Little Italy that dates back to 2012. The battle moved the city to designate the site for affordable housing and end a decades-long lease with an art dealer. It turned into a garden full of sculptures.

The ruling likely means delay, not death, for the affordable housing development, which was approved by the city council in 2019 and is due for 123 very affordable studio apartments. But garden supporters seem to believe the ruling may open the door Regarding negotiations with the Eric Adams administration about their preferred plan to build affordable housing at 388 Hudson Street, about a mile away. (388 Hudson already scheduled for 100 units of affordable housing).

The battle for Elizabeth Street Gardens began ten years ago. That’s when the city first tried to end a monthly lease with the antique dealer Alan Laver, who rented the land. since 1991Reiver, who died last year, was accounted for by the New York paper. Times As a “mean park guard,” he “determines who has access from adjacent shops, Elizabeth Street Gallery(His son, Joseph Laver, executive director of the nonprofit that oversees the garden, continues to fight on his behalf. Decided to allow a 123-unit highly affordable senior housing project for the dollar people to move forward, and was approved by Margaret Chin, who was then the district councilor (she subsequently served a limited term). ) bet her election on the issue. That’s what awaits senior housing,” Chin said. told carved at the time. “When we see [388 Hudson], it is not an alternative site. Additional site. If you can build affordable housing in that location, you should. not one or the other. Chin also said her voters told her her garden was never a public space until she was threatened with eviction.

Elizabeth Street Gardens has filed numerous appeals, including one challenging the environmental review process. Rather than conduct a full-scale review, the city submitted a so-called denial claiming that the project would not adversely affect the environmental and cultural resources of the surrounding area. And last fall, we decided to evict the garden so our partner developer, Penrose, could secure funding to start construction.

But pending judgment — Judge Debra Jones in the case said: took two years Reaching a decision for reasons that remain unknown – stalled the project. And now, of course, it’s stalled again indefinitely.

A spokesperson for the city’s Housing Conservation and Development Authority said it will appeal the decision. -The voice of housing that keeps getting in the way of projects our city desperately needs. HPD said in a statement to Curbed:. But no one knows how long it will take for the appeal to go through the courts. In addition, there is another danger. If the city fails to win an appeal, the court may rule that amending the environmental impact statement means the project must be reapproved by the city council. And Chin, the champion of affordable housing projects, was replaced by Christopher Marte, a longtime supporter of the garden.

The environmental review process is often weaponized to thwart development and other urban landscape changes, blocking or at least stalling everything from bike lanes to housing.Marte too bring the actionalong with several neighborhood groups, argued that building the tower would violate New Yorkers’ newly established rights to air and a healthy environment (passed via last year’s ballot proposal), 3 at Two Bridges. , and called for the project’s environmental review statement to be updated to take into account the effects of the pandemic.

For garden supporters, additional delays mean more time to enjoy beautiful green spaces. For low-income local seniors, it’s a different story. Last month, senior advocacy group LiveOn NY testified before the city council On the city’s need for affordable housing for seniors. The study found that more than 200,000 seniors are on a waiting list for affordable housing through the HUD 202 program, and that on average he waits seven to 10 years for units to become available. I understand. And while some are able to keep their current living situation working during her decade of getting a home, others are less fortunate. significant intervention. ”

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